There are strong indications that a pension-cutting bill will emerge in the Illinois House tomorrow (Tuesday).
While there are strong indications that the bill has been assigned a number, given that bill numbers can easily be changed, the IEA message remains the same, without a bill humber. When there is a bill number, it will become part of the updated IEA message.
It’s imperative that every IEA member pick up the phone and call his/her representative and senator. To be connected to your legislator call:
PLEASE SHARE THIS NUMBER WITH IEA MEMBERS, FRIENDS AND FAMILY.
Download the new pension fact sheet Use it during your call to your legislators.
Lawmakers must be told:
- They must support only constitutional solutions that are agreed to by IEA and the other employee unions.
- They cannot let the pension problem be fixed solely on the backs of teachers, higher education faculty and other public employees.
- They must oppose any “fast track” attempts to ram through solutions.
Legislators must hear these messages directly from IEA members.
“It is crucial that the legislators hear the actual voices of their constituents – our members,” said IEA President Cinda Klickna. “We’ve sent thousands of emails, but now we need to move to the next level. That means getting on the phone and talking directly to lawmakers.”
Throughout Illinois, IEA members, along with members of other public employee unions, are rallying, picketing, writing letters and otherwise making an impression on elected officials.
“Our organizing efforts have been outstanding,” Klickna said. “But we must do more. Our members need to get on the phone and call their legislators immediately.”
On Wednesday (May 23), more than 1,300 supporters of a fair and constitutional pension solution rallied at the headquarters of AFL-CIO. President Klickna was among the speakers.
Here are more examples of member action aimed at preserving pensions:
- Through the IEA Website, IEA members sent over 66,000 messages to the governor and legislators urging them to stop the fast track legislation. Website activity for the week was the highest ever.
- IEA members flooded several legislators’ phone lines with calls about pensions.
- More than 100 teachers, ESPs and school administrators from IEA Region 30 rallied Friday at the Orland Park office of State Representative Charles Krezwick. (Click here for more photos and the inspiring personal reflections on the rally by teacher Kristin Cochran.)
- Like other regions and locals, IEA Region 52 (Naperville-Aurora area) used push e-mail to send member alerts. Over 400 members responded and contacted legislators.
- The IEA Retired Council postponed its meeting and lobbied at the State Capitol on Thursday.
- The Association of Plainfield Teachers trained building representatives and held 10-minute meetings in all buildings the next morning. Participants sent e-mails, texts and made telephone calls to legislators right then.
- IEA leaders and members in Region 15 combined efforts with the Illinois Federation of Teachers and other coalition partners and rallied at State Senator Sue Rezin’s office in Peru. The effort drew excellent media attention.
“These are the kinds of efforts that really count,” President Klickna said. “We’ve got to continue them and not let up. In particular, we urge members to phone their legislators directly and tell them to forget the fast track. The legislature needs to work with the coalition to find a fair and constitutional solution.”